Neal Maupay equalised five minutes into injury time with almost the last kick of the game to steal a point for Brighton at Crystal Palace.
Prior to this, Wilfred Zaha’s penalty on the stroke of half-time seemed to have been enough, after Conor Gallagher was barged from behind by Leandro Trossard, leaving the former Manchester United winger one-on-one from 12 yards, and he made no mistake sending Robert Sanchez the wrong way.
Brighton, without the services of key midfielder Yves Bissouma due to a knee injury, were second best for most of the night and Palace were not too threatened until the final moments.
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As it was, Vicente Guaita’s long kick was hit back over the Eagles’ defence by Joel Veltman and Maupay, on the bounce, lobbed the Palace keeper before cupping his ear to the home fans.
Brighton remain sixth but are now just a point off top spot in the Premier League while Palace stay 15th.
Brighton’s French striker Neal Maupay (C) scores the equalising goal in the 95th minute of the English Premier League football match between Crystal Palace and Brighton and Hove Albion at Selhurst Park
Image credit: Getty Images
TALKING POINT – NO BISSOUMA, NO BRIGHTON
The tell-tell signs were there before kick off. Brighton were favourites before the match due to their stellar start to the season, but when the teams were announced and Bissouma was missing due to a knee injury picked up against Leicester, their price began to contract, leaving it almost a 50-50 betting proposition.
The penalty incident could have occurred in any match, but the dominance Palace enjoyed through the first half would not have happened if the Mali midfielder was on the field. Without his presence, they were lightweight and overrun by the home side, roared on by the ultras at Selhurst Park, who were only quietened in the final throes of the game.
MAN OF THE MATCH – CONOR GALLAGHER (CRYSTAL PALACE)
Without Bissouma there was one man running the show in the midfield and it was the on-loan Chelsea midfielder. His superlative engine was evident on loan at West Brom last season and alone makes him worth starting for all Premier League clubs outside the top six. What he may have added to his game under Vieira, though, is the sense to channel these runs where it will hurt the opposition most.
Palace’s two best chances came when the timing of his runs were too much for his Brighton opponents and saw him being brought down in full flight. In the first instance, it was a spot kick and the second when Marc Cucurella brought him down, but not before his run enabled Christian Benteke to run to the edge of the box and set Ayew free for what should have been the sealing goal. The way he is tracking he could well warrant a spot in a top six side soon, whether it be Chelsea or someone else.
Crystal Palace: Guaita 7, Ward 7, Andersen 7, Guehi 7, Mitchell 7; Milivojevic 7; Gallagher 8*, McArthur 6; Ayew 5, Edouard 7, Zaha 7. Subs: Benteke 6, Kouyate 6, Schlupp 6
Crystal Palace’s Ivorian striker Wilfried Zaha celebrates scoring the opening goal during the English Premier League football match between Crystal Palace and Brighton and Hove Albion at Selhurst Park
Image credit: Getty Images
Brighton: Sanchez 7, Veltman 7, Dunk 7, Duffy 7, Burn 6, Cucurella 7, Gross 6, Lallana 6, Trossard 5, Maupay 7, Welbeck 6. Subs: Alzate 6, Modar 5, Connolly 6.
45+1′ PENALTY! Gallagher races into the box and is barged over from behind by Trossard. A forward’s tackle if ever there was one.
45+2′ GOAL FOR EAGLES! Zaha sends the keeper the wrong way from the spot and puts Palace in front.
51′ Milvojevic trips Maupay 30 yards from goal on the left flank and Cucurella crosses into the box where Dunk heads at goal but Guaita tips the ball over the bar.
78′ What a chance! Cucurella gives the ball away to Gallagher and then brings down the midfielder but not before he has set Benteke free to run through the middle and he squares to the right for Ayew who slides the ball past Sanchez but a yard wide of the post.
90+5′ GOAL FOR BRIGHTON! Maupay equalises with what may be the last kick and sends the Brighton fans mad. It was a fine finish. Guaita’s long clearance was hit back over the Palace defence first time by Gross and the French striker on the bounce lobbed the Eagles stopper.
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